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Mar. 9th, 2011 @ 09:09 pm Shadow World modules
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I've been reading through the pile of Shadow World modules. Here are my thoughts about the ones I've read so far:

- Master Atlas: Nice maps, nice introduction to the history of the world. However, it's not a Master Atlas: there is no description of the individual lands (I guess you'd have to buy the modules for those) or the daily life of the people of specific civilisations. Instead, we get more than 5 pages on demons. Could have been so much more, but missed the mark.
- Cyclops Vale and Other Tales: You typical adventure module. An interesting locale is described with lots to do for the PCs. The adventures could have been fleshed out some more, though -- but in the hands of a capable GM it's good source material.
- Kingdom of the Desert Jewel: The sourcebook on the 'Egyptian' civilisation. Lots of info on the culture and the political and military organisation of the country, as well as information on their neighbours. A whole village is fleshed out! The possible adventures are detailed and varied. Good stuff, on par with the Middle Earth modules.
- The Orgillion Horror: An attempt to do Cthulhu in Rolemaster. And it fails miserably, with lots of 'spells' to compell the characters to do certain things (which of course will get them into trouble). The map of a typical manor might be interesting, but the rest is pretty worthless.
- Demons of the Burning Night: Interesting description of how a people can be completely corrupted. The remnants of the city are absolutely ridiculous and (hence) worthless. The mechanics for summoning demons can be of use for certain campaigns.

All in all, the quality of the modules (so far) is less than those of the Middle Earth variety. Those had a set format that highlighted everything you needed to know about a region, along with lots of things for the PCs to do. I see some vague attempts to mimic that, but the end result is more of a brain-dump rather than a coherent module.
Still, there's much interesting stuff to be found here, but some modules are certainly much better than the others.
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Viking!